How to Successfully Skimp on Wedding Gifts…

By Ollie

Weddings can be a pain can’t they? Sure, we wish no harm towards the happy couple. And we’re all for the free booze and food – occasionally the speeches are great too. But you often forget that in return for the opportunity to attend someone else’s special day, you’re required to pay up to $100 on a wedding gift – which can be a bit of a downer.

Today we’re outlining some tactics for reducing the cost of such an occasion and we’re even sub-categorising it so you can see where you fall in the overall cheapness spectrum.

Discreet Tightness

Clearance sales:

If you want to disguise how much you’ve spent on a gift one of the best tactics is to go for high-ticket items that have been severely reduced. A key example might be a top-brand set of pans that clearly show ‘RRP $189’ on the packaging – but you’ve actually picked them up at a steal for $79 from a clearance sale – you might even be able to gift that from two people – score!

Safety in numbers:

The greater the number of people that go in for a gift, the harder it is to track how much each individual spent. So maybe get a group of friends together – just be sure to collect the money in advance from all of them (this is key by the way), then simply buy something accordingly. And remember to save money at the end for a card…

Multi-item gifts:

The more gifts you give in one hit – the harder it is to work out what your grand total of spending was. Maybe a three-pronged attack of a personalised photoframe, voucher and some nice tableware could only set you back about $80, and if you split the costs between a couple this works out even better. So consider the multi-pack gift – more is often less here (from your a financial point of view anyway).

Re-gifting:

An oldie but a goodie. Sure, you might not have appreciated the hand-knitted rug with your great aunt’s face printed on it – but maybe a couple who have never met her, and are trying to desperately reduce the clutter in their home would appreciate it more? Guys?! … OK, it’s unlikely – so use your common sense on what an acceptable re-gifting present is.

Creative approach:

Sure they may hate this. But if you’re known by your friends as a fairly creative person, they were probably expecting you to rock up with some homemade item that they may or may not want. It’s what a lot of creative types do and this is one of your advantages in life so why not gift them with a photo collage, painted rock or set of clothesline pegs that are dressed up as little people. It’s all good (for you anyway).

Absolute Tightness

Money tree alibi:

We say it’s their fault if they set up a money tree and don’t include envelopes so that people can rightfully state what they’ve contributed towards the couple. So why not make a donation to the tree in the vicinity of $20? You’re still contributing, right? …Right guys? (And yes, we’re starting to feel a little bit like that main guy from House of Cards by exploring this line of tactics, and yes, we’re starting to feel totes awkes about it). We will say though that for your own peace of mind you should donate roughly according to how well you know the couple.

Wedding card signing:

Stumbled upon the wedding gift cart with all the gifts and some unsealed cards included? Well this is your moment to shine! If you’re going to go down this fairly rogue path, we recommend including yourself on a card of people that are more or less in the same group as you. Should they get a signed card from their great Aunt & Uncle that has your smudged, illegible message that happens to be written in a different colour ink – this does not fare well for anyone. So be careful out there, special agent tightness.

Group gift organisation:

Similar to the ‘Safety in Numbers’ idea above – except this time you let the group absorb your costs completely by asking for money up front, then buying accordingly. You even get front-and-centre positioning with your written message in the card. If you’re extremely low on funds this is a winner and you can even justify it by telling yourself you played the project manager role that no one else was prepared to do, so you’re just taking your salary.

Common Challenges

“We would prefer money gifts and not material possessions”

This is starting to be a common request of couples on their wedding day and we feel that they themselves realise how cheeky this request is, which is why it’s often said in a cryptic poem or something similar on the invitations. But don’t be disheartened. Money is too impersonal – that’s your belief and that’s why you got them a severely discounted gift of bedsheets or kitchenware which they may or may not need and which may or may not just add to the clutter of their rapidly dissolving homes… It’s your God-given right, dammit!

“Here are the details to our gift registry”

Ok, the race is on here. We recommend getting in not immediately as it’ll be obvious how much you’ve spent. But don’t get in too late either so that all the small-ticket items are taken. It’ll give you more satisfaction to pay for something outright, such as a $50 kettle – rather than contributing to 13.7566% of a fridge. And you might even find two small-ticket items such as a placemat set, pack of drinking tumblers, towels ect that will still keep you under budget – and two gifts are better than one, right?

“Here are our bank details for you to send through funds for our big day”

Are they serious? Well we’re not going to justify this one with a response. Just don’t do it – or if you are, transfer slightly less than what you would have been comfortable spending on a present outright. We feel this is the best way to handle such a request – otherwise any of the tactics outlined in ‘Absolute Tightness’ will suffice.

So there you have it. Of course, if you’d like to go with the whole cost-effective homeware gift, we can certainly help you out in that department. And sorry if this blog post is perceived as being too anti-wedding in its approach. We’re all in favour of people celebrating their big day but we also want to see your dollar go further – call it an occupational hazard of ours.

Good luck out there!

How to Choose The Best Mother’s Day Gift and What Not to Write on the Card

Mother’s Day comes around so quickly every year and can put the pressure on when you have to find the perfect present for your amazing mother or mother-in-law. Sure, picking a present in primary school was easy, with the Mother’s Day stall at your beck-and-call and a simple cellophane wrapped bar of soap was the best present ever. Nowadays the endless choice of gift ideas can be so overwhelming, so to make you feel at ease we’ve created this guide of do’s and dont’s for Mother’s Day.

Do’s and dont’s of writing on your Mother’s Day card:

1. Try not to refer to your Mother as a piece of poo

Mum your a piece of poo
Image via funnyordie.com

2. Keep focused, compliment your mother before complimenting yourself

6-36375-8_enhanced-buzz-20689-1330626296-29-1362613634 Via ninetoninemag
Image via ninetoninemag

3. Try not to resort to violence to show your mum how much you care

Dear Mum
Image via reddit.com

4. Make sure you fact check before referencing what your mum does for work

fail-8
Image via buzzfeed.com

5.  Showing that you’re in touch with your Mum’s interests is always good!

Mother's Day Ellen
Image via theberry.com

6. And always make sure to remind her of how much you appreciate her hard work.

Thank you mom for making me food so I dont die
Image via Reddit

Now that we’ve covered the art of mastering a great Mother’s Day card, let’s get on with the good stuff!

How to Choose the Best Gift to Suit Your Mum

If your Mum loves home design and crafts:

If your Mother loves anything homewares related and lives to bake delicious treats, then play to her love of the home by choosing something to inspire her to create. Whether it be some new baking toys to play with, some stylish new kitchenwares or even something crafty, she will love something that allows her to unleash her creative streak.

Home Design Gift Ideas

1. Martha Stewart White Pom Poms
2. Martha Stewart Cupcake Stand
3. Design Your Home by Shaynna Blaze
4. Muffin Baking Tray and Cupcake Holders
5.  Maxwell & Williams Vivacious Dinner Set

If your mum is into healthy living and is a fitness fanatic

If your mum is the first one up in the morning, with her running shoes on or perhaps her yoga mat, ready to get a good workout in, then chances are she will love anything that will make her workout even better. From healthy living cookbooks to stylish activewear, you’re sure to find something that your mum needs or wants. A new jumper for winter or a trendy new fitness tech band will certainly impress!

Healthy Living Fitness Gift Ideas

1. The 20/20 Diet Cookbook by Lola Berry
2. Bonds Fleece Hoodie
3. New Balance Women’s Running Shoes
4. Misfit Flash Activity and Sleep Monitor
5. Track n Field Compression Tights

If your mum is a woman of style

Stylish mums are always easy to buy for when you know the brands they like to match their personal style. Think of some of your mum’s favourite brands and look for stylish pieces that you know your mum will love. Watches are always a great gift idea, and jewellery is always appreciated. Of course, when all else fails, every woman loves a good pair of pyjamas.

Style and Brand Gift Ideas for Mother's Day

1. Marc by Marc Jacobs Truman Watch 
2. OPI Take Ten Nail Lacquer Collection
3. Sass & Bide Dazed & Amused Sunglasses
4. Pandora Sterling Silver Bracelet
5. Jethro and Jackson Women’s Fractured Floral PJ Pants

If your mum is a masterchef!

There’s just something about a home-cooked meal that always tastes so much better. If your mum is a masterchef in her own right, then she deserves to be rewarded.Think about what your mum loves to cook and play to those ideas. New cookbooks are always great for inspiration and if your mum is a foodie then cookbooks written by her favourite chefs are a winner. Other gift ideas are platters and/or boards for her to present her amazing creations on, or perhaps a nice tea set so that she can kick back and unwind after a whipping up a good meal.

Masterchef Mother's Day Gift Ideas

1. Jamie’s 30 Minute Meals DVD collection
2. Matt Preston Cookbook 
3. Italian Food Safari Cookbook
4. French Inspired Urbain Coutellerie Cheese Board & Knife
5. BODUM Tea Maker Set

If your mum loves a good tech accessory

Busy mums are always looking for things to make their lives easier. They are always on the run and tech accessories are a great gift idea to help them out and show that you care. Lifeproof phone cases are stylish and very practical to protect phones from all types of mess. If your mum loves a great family photo, a selfie stand will go down a treat. Treat her to something new, exciting and something that will work with the technology that she has.

Tech Accessories

 

1. The Selfie Snapper 
2. Lifeproof Phone Case
3. Kobo Wifi Tablet
4. KeyCover Hard Case Keyboard for iPad
5. Bamboo Wireless Touchpad

Have you had any hilarious Mother’s Day present fails? Don’t worry, we all have! We would love to hear your stories so share them in the comments with us!

Looking for more Mother’s Day inspiration? Check out our Mother’s Day Sales on Catch of the Day for thousands more gift ideas for a great price. 

7 Guy Style Gifts for the Trendy Traveller

A worldly type of guy has a great sense of style…

Loving the finer things in life, the trendy traveller has a defined style with all of the essentials for an effortless look.

Men_flatlay

We’ve compiled 7 great gift ideas for any guy who loves a worldly style, for a fraction of the price!

 A compass

Compasses are a quirky, great gift idea for a guy with style. There’s something about giving the gift of direction that really sends a positive message.

A trusty pocket knife

For whenever he gets himself a little too far into the wilderness, a trusty pocket knife is the essential tool.

Pop of colour

Adding a pop of colour to an outfit, such as our Van Heusen Paisley Silk Green Tie works well to brighten up a classic men’s look. A tie is an inexpensive gift idea that’s full of personality!

Check out our Guy Style Pinterest Board; the best looks and products for men with style! 

Statement watch

Nothing says men’s style more than a statement watch, and when your put Hugo Boss and watch design together, you really can’t go wrong. Be careful to choose wisely, the kind of watch a man wears say’s a lot about his personality!

Classy belt

A belt in a man’s style is like the exclamation point on his look! Currently we are loving the range of Men’s Style Accessories over on Catch of The Day, including the range from Van Heusen.

A pair of sunnies

No trendy traveller would even think of leaving the house without a pair of classy sunglasses. Tried and true Ray Ban sunglasses are the best brand to go for!

The wallet

A man’s wallet is perfect in a dark shade of brown or black leather and also makes for a great gift idea.

Do you have any great men’s style gift ideas? Let us know so we can add it to the list!

(Not all items in image available for sale)

How to Buy for Someone Who’s Hard to Buy For – A Gift Survival Guide

By Ollie

This is a topic we get asked all the time (well, we think one person may have asked us once – but we just know it’s a common one). From what we gather, dads are more often than anyone to fall within this category – but let’s be honest, we’re all affected by it. So here are some of our ideas – get on ‘em and tell your mates.

Magazine subscriptions

If you know that they have at least one field of interest and they’re not the type to get into a full-on novel with hundreds of pages – this is a good option. It’s also becoming more likely to find great deals on 6 or 12 month subscriptions – so keep your eyes peeled for some killer deals out there!

Store or Company Gift Cards

So you know your Dad spends oodles of time under the bonnet of their car of or in their garage, but have no idea what they’re actually doing? Gift cards to Bunnings, Masters or Supercheap Auto ought to solve this. Know someone who loves music but probably already has all the albums you could get them? Credit through Ticketmaster or Ticketek could be just what they need. You get the idea.

Gifts for everyone!
Gifts for everyone!

Restaurant Gift Cards

If they’ve got a fondness for a specific restaurant or two – why not give them a night out at their favouite? Restaurant gift cards are the proverbial bees knees and you can buy them readily at good supermarkets and department stores. Find out more information here and bon appétit.

Food & drink

Similar to above but more of the ‘have it now’ variety. Good chocolates, champagne and wine are obvious choices. If you hang around long enough they may just share them with you as well. (We didn’t like saying that last part because when we read it again it sounded like a prime time TV ad selling frozen vegetables or something. But hey, we did it and it’s staying in now).

Personalised gifts

Right off the bat, we want to say that homes can certainly be overrun with personalised calendars, mugs, stationery, bumper stickers, jigsaw pieces… and so on. But having one or two of these really well thought out, emotive and personalised gifts can be a seriously great gift idea. Did this person go on a holiday and have a kickin’ time? Are they obsessed with their team sport that they play every week? ‘Yes’, you say? Then a photobook loaded with some fun & memorable times could be a definite winner – and most of the time you can find a great valued option on Catch or Scoopon. Our tip? Try to not dilute its effectiveness with anything less than excellent pics. If in doubt, leave them out!

Such-A-Good-Friend

How to check if you’ve done well

Beware of them repeating out loud the name of the product

“Oh, you got me a Singalong B-Side CD of Christmas carols with Darryn Lyons… how thoughtful”. You can see where we’re going with this. If they read out loud the name of the product it’s not good for you (thanks Jerry). They’re most likely trying to buy time and to get their head around the fact that you know very little about each other. Maybe you should have taken that camping trip together thirteen years ago after all?

Watch out for sweeping gift giving statements

If they start saying things such as “I don’t think we need to give gifts to each other anymore” it’s a giant red flag. It may not necessarily have all been your fault though. Maybe this year’s collection of the fake inflatable poo, a knitted something-a-rather and a cruddy iDevice (which has a unique ability to only work when you don’t need it to) that has put them in this changed state of mind. But the fact remains that you might not have helped.

Precautions

Always keep the receipt

Capiche? This point is so important we even followed it directly with Mafia language.

Caphie!
Capiche!

Check that they don’t already own it or a very similar product

Although it’s nice (or not) to have a copy of Guy Sebastian’s album in the car, office, toilet, kennel, garage and houseboat – it may lead to people uncharacteristically murdering each other along with peak levels of global celibacy. So help yourself out by doing a bit of digging/prying first.

 

Well that’s it… Or is it?

Maybe there’s an absolutely, totally, fully sick, Corey Worthington-Inspired (that’s right, we went there) gift idea for that hard-to-buy-for person that we’ve totally missed? If so, chuck a comment our way!

Happy huntin’, stay safe.